Low effort issues and tickets, a cultural problem

Mon, Mar 18, 2024 2-minute read

Low effort issues and tickets, a cultural problem

Teams who lack any form a control by seniors seem to develop members who offer low effort and poor quality issues, tickets and PR’s - especially in young males.

I try to always set a high standard - which is actually just the standard.

Issues have at a minimum what, why, when and how. It will always have an end state.

Pull requests will always have at least:

  • What this is doing or why this exists, linking to tickets if available
  • How it can be run/tested
  • If required, diagrams/mermaid.js and so on.

I always act as though every ticket and PR could be:

  • Reviewed by someone unfamiliar with the code (new team member, for instance)
  • Used as reference in the future, rationale or searching for when bugs where introduced

Unfortunately, in several teams, I come across a culture of laziness where these “non-code” tasks are taken for granted.

Now I refuse to review, or pick up tickets unless they have more details. I’ll just comment (nicely) that more information is needed and when that is provided I’ll move forward with this task.

This works for me because I am typically afforded that level of leniency within the roles I chose.

But, for juniors, they don’t or can’t and will start to emulate poor performers who don’t exhibit the standard expected of all developers. Couple this with a team where no one is given guidelines or expectations and its a recipe for disaster.

A team culture is everything and it must be set by the seniors.

A couple military gem’s which are corny but ultimately true when it comes to standards and leadership:

  • It’s called leadership not like-a-ship
  • The standard you walk past is the standard you accept

I’ll do better to encourage people into making an effort with these small but significant pieces of the software development teamwork puzzle. I hope you all do too.


#leadership #teams